Pictured: front row from the left, NNPA Foundation Treasurer Lenora Alexander, NNPA Foundation
The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) has officially paid off the mortgage on its national headquarters in Washington, D.C.
"It's a major step for the NNPA, an organization that is well over 80 years old," says Karl B. Rodney, chairman of the NNPA Foundation. "It's a major step for Black media to have a national headquarters in Washington. We see it as important to have our voices heard, to have our position known, and to be in collaboration with other agencies and organizations that are headquartered in Washington so we can work together in a more effective way."
The NNPA is a federation of over 200 Black community newspapers throughout the country, including The Skanner News Group. Bernie Foster, publisher of The Skanner News, serves as the vice chairperson of the NNPA Foundation.
Rodney says the organization has owned the headquarters building for about 15 years and actually accelerated the process to pay off the mortgage so it can more effectively take advantage of the opportunities the location provides.
According to him, the next step is to renovate the inside of the building. The NNPA expects a comprehensive proposal on what specific renovations it will need to undertake in January.
"We're now going to go on a major campaign to raise funds to renovate the building and make it an epicenter of technology—a digital world for Black communication media where we can have a presence in Washington and be heard and can service all of our publishers and the programs we serve, the scholarship programs we do, the fellowship programs we have," says Rodney.